7 Deadliest Roads In The U.S.A

APR 3 2018 BY STAFF 8

The most dangerous roadways in the U.S. aren’t on a remote, crumbling mountainside, they’re highways you drive every day.

In 2016, more than 40,000 road deaths occurred, the highest number since 2007. America has its share of no-guardrail mountain passes, and we can claim plenty of nail-biting country byways with more blind spots than a Six Flags coaster. But when it comes to danger, nothing beats the federal highway system. The country’s most-traveled, most mundane roads are a grim abattoir, and they’re getting grimmer. Here are the top highways you should, but probably won’t be able to, avoid.

Related – Tesla Puts Blame On Missing Barrier For Deadly Model X Crash

I-80 in Wyoming

Seven Deadliest Roads

On average, more than 17 people a year die on this Interstate, which once comprised part of the Oregon Trail. That equals the death toll of the Donner Party every two years or so. In April, a Laramie woman died during a dense fog when her Honda CR-V was sandwiched between a speeding UPS truck and a Penske moving truck driven by her husband. In 2015, a 45-year-old man and two children perished when they ran into the back of a semi. Another calamitous fog bank led to a terrible series of wrecks in 2014, with four dead and dozens injured. In the first crash, seven semis and a horse trailer burst into flames.

I-40 in Arizona

Seven Deadliest Roads

Once the western linchpin of Route 66, I-40 is no place to get your kicks. Nearly 25 fatal crashes a year occur on Arizona’s I-40, and stretches of I-40 in New Mexico and California also have terribly high fatal crash rates. Avoid. Last October, a passenger vehicle – and a passenger – disintegrated on the hood of an oncoming semi, as smoke from a planned forest burn reduced visibility on the road to basically nothing. This year, a surprise May hailstorm led to a terrifying incident involving multiple rollovers: “The first rollover collision occurred due to hail and ice covering the roadway. Two people rushed to the aid of the victims from that roll-over and were struck by a commercial vehicle.”

US-83 in Texas

Seven Deadliest Roads

Somewhat ironically known as the Vietnam Veterans Highway, this road consistently boasts one of the highest death rates in America, averaging 26 a year over the last decade. It will be even higher this year. In April, a 20-year-old high school football player, who was allegedly texting while driving his pickup truck, veered out of his lane and rammed into a bus full of elderly church members returning from a choir retreat in South Central Texas. Twelve people died at the scene, 13 total, prompting a federal investigation. “A crush of black skid marks. A curled-up fragment of a women’s gold watchband. A beaten-up black boot. A litter of lavender medical latex gloves and emptied water bottles,” the Austin-American Statesmanreported of the remnants of the wreckage.

I-95 in the Carolinas

Seven Deadliest Roads

Nearly 450 people have died in this segment of the busy I-95 corridor in the last decade. But few accidents have been worse than the one that occured near the state line recently. A Volvo gas tanker truck rear-ended a Dodge pickup, which ran into a Ford Explorer, which hit a Ford Escape. Meanwhile, the original tanker slammed into two big rigs, including a Freightliner, which burst into flames and barreled across the median. When it was all over, five people were dead, including the tanker driver and a family of four, including a one-year-old and four-year-old girl.

US-2 in Montana

Seven Deadliest Roads

For the most sparsely populated state, Montana sees more than its fair share of deadly crashes, and has the highest rate of drunk driving in the country. US-2, America’s northernmost highway, always has a high death rate. Mostly famously and tragically, nine members of the Whitefish High School wrestling team died in 1984 while a school bus collided with a skidding semi near Glacier National Park, “its front end bursting into flames.” The crash haunts Whitefish to this day, and is marked by a large memorial of stacked white crosses. But the road hasn’t gotten any safer. This January, a most Montana death occurred when a vehicle carrying railroad employees tried to pass a snowplow and rammed head-on into a truck from the state Department Of Transportation.

US-101 in Oregon

Seven Deadliest Roads

Two people die every month while enjoying the views from this scenic coastal highway. Last week, a 42-year-old woman lost control of her Corolla, which drove off the highway and overturned. Rescuers found the driver “partially submerged in three feet of water.” Earlier this year, in a dramatic incident, a man died after driving his 1999 BMW into a bus that had been converted into a motorhome. On the deadly morning of Feb. 26, an Xterra collided with a Taurus and the Xterra driver lost his life when his car caught fire. Meanwhile, a green 2002 Ford Explorer hit an ice patch, overturned, and the driver died. Earlier in February, three teenagers died when a Mitsubishi crashed while drag-racing. You don’t come back from Dead Man’s Curve on the Oregon 101.

US-1 in Florida

Seven Deadliest Roads

This road has, by far, the highest death-per-crash rate in the United States, another dubious distinction for The Sunshine State. The news around US-1 is a constant stream of helmetless motorcyclists taking a spill coming out of the Keys and elderly drivers making bad judgments. Five people died in February when a driver turned his Mazda Tribute directly into the path of an oncoming Ford F-250, closing the highway for more than five hours. Given how dangerous the driving conditions can be on US-1, that shutdown probably came as a relief.

Written by Neal Pollack – Motor1

Categories: Lists


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8 Comments on "7 Deadliest Roads In The U.S.A"

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I grew up on the Hi-Line in Montana and Hwy 2 ran straight through the center of my hometown. Alcohol and sleep deprivation are two of the main problems. The Fort Peck Indian Reservation on one end, Fort Belknap in the middle and the Blackfeet Indian Reservation on the other end have had more than their fair share of horrific accidents. Alcoholism used to be rampant on the Res. Hopefully that is less of an issue today.
But it is common for Montanans to drive 300 miles to go shopping or to a HS basketball game in extreme winter conditions and the results can be deadly.

Is there an EV aspect here? Or at least non-car electric transportation aspect? or alternative-drivetrain aspect ofsome kind?
If not, I fail to see how this belongs on the site.

It’s about cars!

Most of these accidents were caused by poor visibility and/or poor driver judgment on what should otherwise by relatively-safe highways. Level 4 or 5 autonomous vehicles with multiple sensor (camera/radar/Lidar) technology likely would reduce the death toll. Given the recent dialog about Autopilot and whether it contributed to or could have prevented the Tesla Model X Bay Area accident brings highway safety to the EV forefront.

I know the section of US83 in Texas because I have family that live on it. It’s a very lightly travelled road and only made this list because of that one horrible multiple fatal wreck; otherwise it’s just another Texas hill country road connecting small towns and resorts.

It’s also marked wrong on the map. The section in question (Concan) is about 90 miles due west (left) of San Antonio. I’m not sure what road is being highlighted on the that map.

Excessive speed and failure to yield probably led to most of these crashes. I’ve noticed American drivers almost everywhere seem to be more and more impatient. And it’s not getting better. Some are simply reckless.

Passing on the right is too common…and….contradicts managed flow.

That would not be so much of a problem if people were not going 45 in a marked 70 zone, where people are going 80 and the slow people are in the left lanes. It is too easy for people to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, it is much like giving a chimp a gun. There are many that have a ramp on the right, yet make a left across 3 lanes of traffic to get on the ramp for traffic going in the other direction instead of getting on the freeway going the same way on the right hand side. I have seen this a few times here where I live on highway 18 getting onto the I15 going south. Perhaps what is needed is a computer that locks out people from starting the car if they are unable to answer math problems where a calculator would not help them such as what is 3/8 plus 5/8 if they can’t answer that they should not be driving a car.